Gabriel has been speaking a bit more and is becoming understandable to people other than me, which is definitely a relief. Unfortunately he still slurs his words, drops consonants or gets his sounds so confused that sometimes I just look at him with, I'm sure, the most confused expression on my face. Because his speech is so jumbled it always astounds me to hear Edie speak so clearly. She's not even 13 months old yet and she already has 6 words in her vocabulary and she says them more clearly than Gabe can (other than "mom" which Gabe has down to a fine science and which he insists on saying 25 times a minute).
Edie can say "mama", "dada", "hi", "bye", "done" and "down". When she finishes her food she states "done" and if you aren't quick enough to respond she'll then start to toss her food on the floor...such a fun stage that is! When she falls over or lands on her tush she and Gabriel both shout "down" and laugh about it. She also loves to say "hi" and "bye" while waving at whoever she is talking to. Her grasp of language so early is astounding to me, especially when in comparison to my son. Gabe will be caught up soon though! He has an appointment with a speech pathologist in September to assess how far behind he is; and if he needs some extra help then he can get it and be caught up before he starts preschool.
Although Gabe is behind in his language skills (especially when compared to his sister) his understanding of mechanical or hands on applications amazes me. You can show that kid once how to do something and he will remember. He loves puzzles and puts them together (sometimes upside down!), he has buttons, zippers, latches, door handles, locks, blocks, child safety devices, all figured out. I've also never met a kid who enjoys keeping toy containers and packaging so he can put them all back in the correct place he first received it in. His memory is surprisingly good!
I have no doubt that with a little extra help Gabriel will catch up on his language. I guess it is still surprising to me that kids raised in an identical environment can be so different. I can't wait to see what my new baby is like, where he or she will excel and how he or she will differ from my other kiddies! It's truly exciting to watch your kids take on their own completely distinct personalities and talents!